On Roald Dahl + Willy Wonka Candy

11.20.2010


Who has growing up reading Charlie & the Chocolate Factory!?  Yeahhhh~  I have a soft spot for Roald Dahl (speaking of, who else though 'Roald' was 'Ronald' all through elementary school?) from BFG, The Witches, Matilda, The Amazing Mr. Fox...I love how his books were funny, totally insane and never patronized a kid's intelligence.   His humor is wickedly dark at times and has a sharply cynical view of adults/authority figures, which I find endlessly amusing.


If you haven't already, you should also give Mr. Dahl's autobiographies a shot - they're actually my favorites among all his books (and yes, I've read them all. Don't judge me ><).  They're called Boy and Going Solo, two of the best autobiographies I've ever read, honestly.   Boy is about his childhood from his birth all the way to the end of college; it's chock full of hilarious (and sometimes painful) stories about boarding school, dentist visits without anesthesia, summer vacations in Norway and goat's "tobacco" ;) You'll have to read the book to find out what that is xD  Going Solo starts off right after college when he gets hired as a "Shell man" (as in the gas station) and sets off to Africa and later joins RAF when WWII starts.  He writes in a very anecdotal style and leaves a lot of juicy details out (more on that later) so these books move very fast and are rather on the thin side.  They're rife with his trademark Quentin Black illustrations and they're all just all-around, classic Roald Dahl.  

HOWEVER, these are still marked as children's books and thus he leaves a *ahem* shit-ton of details of his life out.  It really is quite interesting to see how he portrays himself indeed...because *cue squealing* his official authorized biography called Storyteller just came out!  I'm ashamed to admit I haven't read it yet because I'm waiting for the paperback edition but reviews have shown peeks of the real man behind the books.
Donald Sturrock's "Storyteller" enriches the now-familiar outline of an eventful life with much new information, peels away the layers of myth that Dahl promulgated about himself, and makes clear the man's immense charm as well as his cold self-possession and emotional callousness. This is a major literary biography, immensely satisfying to read and worthy of its complex subject. 
Hm, charm I get but "cold" and "emotional callousness" are surprising and infinitely intriguing.  And damn, I knew he was a flying ace (which is earned title btw, not every pilot is an 'ace') but he was a secret spy too?  And a ladies' man?  Well, I guess the last one doesn't surprise me.


He's basically living proof humor is the key to getting laid. A lot. =_=  I'm sure the $50,000/yr (that's considered a lot even NOWdays) and uniform didn't hurt either ^_^   And he wasn't sleeping with no hookers in a back alley, no~ apparently his thing were "older women, socialites and actresses" and he did eventually marry an actress.  *sigh* Though if you think about it....successful, charming, good-looking, visceral wit, loved his mama and sisters AND a war hero?   I knew he had to have a flaw somewhere -_____-  Apparently, it was in his pants.  Anyway, I'm going to be getting my paws on this book the second it's out on paperback and sharing any other sordid details I may stumble across. I'm such a gossip.

And what relates more deliciously to Roald Dahl than Willy Wonka candies? Or more specifically Wonka Exceptionals Fruit Marvels and Jellies?


I saw these at Wal-mart and even though they were ridiculously expensive, I was sold on the packaging and the idea of Golden Tickets *sigh*  Unfortunately, that's just about the only good thing about them.  Perhaps like many hot, successful, funny boys their packaging is the only good thing about them. Or should I say....package ;)?


Fruit Marvels (White Grape) - sour coating on the outside (like Warheads) with a hard, thin candy shell then a mild grape-flavored jelly in the middle.  These weren't too bad, fun to eat, lots of textures.  I liked cracking through the candy shell ^^  A solid 3.5/5 but certainly not worth the $6-7 that is was.

Fruit Jellies (Goji Berry) - this is hands down the most expensive glorified "orange slices" I've ever eaten.  For one thing it tastes like orange not goji berry as far as I'm concerned. It's basically an artificially orange-flavoured jelly cube covered with sugar.  They are cloyingly sweet and I had a lot of difficulty finishing the bag.  At least they photograph well.   Just buy the good ol' (cheap) Orange Slices.  Do not buy 0/5.

Overall, these stupid candies did not do R.Dahl's stories any justice.  If Willy Wonka's candies actually tasted this bad there never would've been a book about it since it would have gone out of business both literally and figuratively. 

8 comments :

  1. Wow, awesome review. Thanks. I had no idea. I need to get those books and read them. :-)

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  2. awesome review!! i would've never looked twice at the candy aisle, but now I think I might have to! the orange cubes do photograph nice, but dang.. like you said.. def not worth the price.

    I remember what sold me on your blog was some of your earlier food reviews. I think it was on japanese candy.. lol.. not much variety in VA.. va beach anyway.. idk about where you live! (closer to DC? more variety?)

    cant wait for your concealer review ^_^

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  3. Aww Roald Dahl! I love that man, his books always bring back wonderful memories from my youth... I only know his books by their Dutch title of course. Maybe I should read them in English, as they were meant to be read...
    I think these books are a definite 'have to read' for any kid... I know I spent countless hours in Dahl's world.

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  4. Chocolate factory was my favourite childhood book!!!! :D

    looking forward to your video on the concealers, am a die-hard concealer freak XD

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  5. OMG I LOVE HIM!!!
    i've never read his autobiographies boy or going solo, considering autobiographies were genre i didn't consider pleasure reading... don't know why though cuz when i do, they're always so good...
    anyways they seem interesting, especially storyteller

    loved your lil paragraph under his pilot photo, SO funny =D
    ick... the candies don't look that good, rather plain...
    definitely wouldn't be picking them up anytime soon =p

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  6. i never knew roald dahl released autobiogaphies. Of course he's one of the most famous and celebrated children writes in the UK. his Granddaughter, sophie dahl is also writing too... perhaps thats where she gets her talent from ;)

    i have never tried willy wonka chocolates, although they do sell it in japan! perhaps i should give it a go !

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  7. I used to read his books when i was little =) loved it, but it was Dutch ofcourse xD I love the movie: chocolate factory ='D

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  8. hmmm now you've got me curious about that sour willy wonka candy! Im a suck for sour candy! and ewww orange, one of my most detested candy flavors! I especially dislike orange chocolate *shudders*

    anyways, wow I learned a lot about Roald dahl just from read your blog post and can I just say I love your comment about his "flaw" hahaha you can see the playboy in him even in his black and white photo that you have up! but im quite interested i reading his biographies now =)

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